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Indian-American professor wins teaching award

Rajani Ganesh-Pillai has won the prestigious Peltier Award for her innovative teaching methods.

By: Press Trust of India | Washington | April 2, 2015 3:55:36 pm

An Indian-American assistant professor, who employs a game called “Baffa Baffa” to have students understand culture’s role in business, has won the prestigious Peltier Award for her innovative teaching methods.

Rajani Ganesh-Pillai, who teaches marketing at the North Dakota State University, will be recognised for her efforts to bring hands-on experience, theory-based understanding and an enhanced global perspective to her students.

One of her innovative practices is a game called “Baffa Baffa,” where the goal is to have students understand culture’s role in business and how it can affect transactions and relationships.


“This is an eye-opening experience for a lot of students,” said Chanchai Tangpong, professor of management at the university. “This makes them more aware of and more sensitive to cultural issue underlying marketing decisions.”

Ganesh-Pillai is among four faculty members who would be honoured during the annual Celebration of Faculty Excellence on May 6, according to a statement.

“NDSU has many amazing and dedicated faculty members,” said senior academic administrator Beth Ingram. “The four faculty being honoured this spring have distinguished themselves as the best of the best. I am truly delighted to be able to recognize their accomplishments.”

Ganesh-Pillai earned a bachelor’s degree and Master of Business Administration from the University of Pune. She also has a Master of Business Administration from Emporia State University, Kansas, and a doctorate from the University of Central Florida.

The Peltier Award was established by Joseph and Norma Peltier to honor innovation in teaching. The NDSU Development Foundation sponsors the awards.

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